Home inspections have always been an integral part of buying a home, but a new and notable trend is changing up the process for sellers. Many sellers are electing to have what is called a pre-listing home inspection. Historically, the home inspection has generally been the purview of the buyer who enlists a third party to evaluate the home and look for potential issues. A pre-listing home inspection flips the process on its head in that the seller will opt to have the home inspected prior to listing the home for sale.
For buyers, the home inspection is a safeguard against costly and unexpected repairs. Uncovering an issue in the inspection enables the buyer to renegotiate the terms of the deal or even back out of the sale if the issue is serious enough to warrant such a move.
Sellers typically experience some trepidation when it comes to an inspection. Even the most well maintained home can develop unknown leaks or surprises. Waiting for a report to return can generate anxiety, and it can also hurt the wallet if repairs must be made prior to the completion of the sale.
In opting for a pre-listing home inspection, sellers can get the scary part out of the way upfront and have a little more time to prepare for costly repairs. It can also enable a seller to focus more on negotiations when the time comes, rather than reacting to a surprise discovery that threatens to upend the whole process.
4 Reasons to Complete Your Home Inspection Prior to Listing
- A pre-listing home inspection gives the seller time to make repairs. If you opt not to pre-inspect your home, a costly, last-minute repair might just be a deal or piggybank breaker. If your pre-listing home inspection encounters an issue, you have time to complete the repair prior to dealing with the pressure of a negotiation timeline that might be tight or demanding. The idea is that you will have time to seek out competitive bids on the project and complete the repairs without worrying about what the buyer may do if the project runs a little long. Making the repairs on your own timeline ensures that you can deal with the issue on its own and without other pressures that may influence your decision-making.
- A pre-listing home inspection makes it less likely that you will need to renegotiate terms because of an unexpected issue. A pre-listing inspection will not guarantee that a buyer will not opt for their own inspection, of course. However, inspectors generally should uncover the monumental issues that can hang up a deal. Opting for the pre-listing negotiation can help cut down on the uncertainty that might prompt a renegotiation. This can be helpful when you are dealing with a sellers market where there may be multiple offers on the table. You can reject, counter, or accept knowing that no glaring issues will make you wish you had gone with the other offer in the end.
- A pre-listing home inspection reveals the condition of your home so that you can more accurately price your home. If your home sits outside the expected market pricing, then you will likely have trouble finding a buyer. A pre-listing home inspection gives you an accurate assessment of the condition of the home, which makes pricing your home a little easier. The condition of the home can exert an influence on what you are able to ask for the home. Obviously, a home in better condition will list higher and likely sell higher than a home in deteriorating condition. In fact, a well-built, inspected home may present a tantalizing alternative to a home that lacks an inspection or suffers from some deferred maintenance. It becomes easier to sleep at night if you know your home is in good condition and you have added confidence that your real estate agent has priced it with the best information possible.
- A pre-listing home inspection helps you build valuable trust with a potential buyer. A pre-listing home inspection suggests ultimately that you are both serious about selling the home and committed to giving buyers a reason to purchase your home. When the seller completes a home inspection, it can help buyers feel at ease about the condition of the house. This frees them up to envision their future in the home free of worry about finding unexpected issues that may make the dream a nightmare. Ultimately, this can help sell your home more quickly by allowing buyers to focus on the strengths of your home over worrying about the unknowns.
Just because there are a number of positives when it comes to pre-listing home inspections does not mean that there are some negatives.
It will cost you more money to have an inspection than not. You will also need to disclose what was found and you may still have to go through a buyer’s home inspection for their level of comfort. Ultimately, the worst unexpected repairs will be costly no matter if the inspection takes place prior to the listing or prior to the closing. However, none of these options are nonstarters, but must be evaluated in light of your own situation.
Whether or not you opt for a pre-listing inspection must be considered on your personal preference, confidence in your home’s condition, and desire for risk. A pre-inspection affords more peace of mind, but it will cost you some money.
If you are unsure of whether or not you want to perform a pre-listing inspection, then working with an experienced realtor like those at REALTEAM Real Estate can help you make an informed decision. If you would like to speak to someone about pre-listing home inspections or have a question about something else, then give us a call today. We are your prime choice for Michigan real estate!
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